Arena mode is Black Ops 3‘s version of League Play. It’s a playlist designed to cater to the more competitive community within Call of Duty. In other words, it’s for the hardcore, top-line players. If you aren’t a seasoned CoD player or don’t maintain AT LEAST a 2.0 K/D on average, you’ll probably want to stick to standard public matches.

BO3 Arena Mode Overview

Black Ops 3 Arena Mode

 

Arena mode now follows the exact rules put in place for the Call of Duty World League, the professional competitive league introduced by Activision and Treyarch just before the launch of Black Ops 3. This means that while you’re in Arena you’ll be playing with the same game settings and restrictions that teams like OpTic Gaming, compLexity, and Team Kaliber work with.

So, what are the rules? What game modes are played? What maps are supposed to be in the rotation? What restrictions are there? We know you guys have a ton of questions – and they’re all answered below.

Ranking

First off, let’s talk about the ranking system. At this time there are a total of 20 different levels players can achieve with the highest one being labeled the “Master Division”. The actual ranking algorithm is very simple. The more wins you get – the higher level you’ll reach.

In order to reach the highest division of Arena you’ll need to rack up a ton of wins and keep losses to a bare minimum. For every couple of losses you get, you’re demoted a rank. But, if you keep up a great win streak you’ll find yourself rising through ranks.

The higher the level, the more wins that are required to progress. So, be sure to head into Arena with only your most talented buds and be sure to fine tune your class setups prior to jumping into Arena matches.

Rules and Restrictions

Alright, so what are the exact rules and restrictions used in Arena mode? Let’s start with restrictions.

Call of Duty World League

The following can NOT be used in Arena matches:

  • UAV
  • Care Package
  • H.A.T.R.
  • XM-53

It should be pretty obvious why these are restricted. Anything that shows enemy movement on the mini-map is unnecessary and not allowed, hence the exclusion of both the UAV and H.A.T.R.

Although your chances of getting high-tier killstreaks from a Care Package are relatively low, it’s still considered unfair because, well, you can still magically pop a Mothership at any time.

Finally, the XM-53 isn’t allowed because it is a free-fire rocket launcher that can be used to target enemy soldiers, not just scorestreaks.

Rules for ALL Game Modes

Now let’s talk about the actual rules of the game. First we’ll list the game settings that apply to all game modes, then we’ll talk about the rules used in specific game modes.

Black Ops 3 Arena Rules

Competitive Settings for All Modes

Ban / Protect Voting = Enabled

Ban / Protect Time = 30 seconds

Create a Class Edit Time = 90 seconds

Scorestreak Edit Time = 20 seconds

Votes Per Player = 1 Vote

Specialist Draft = Enabled

Draft Time = 20 Seconds

 

Advanced Settings

Pre-Stage = 3 Seconds

In-Between = 3 Seconds

Post-Stage = 3 Seconds

Edit Create a Class = Always

Edit Scorestreaks = Always

Player Select Order = Random

Post-Stage Shuffle = None

 

Global Settings:

Team Assignment = Host Select

Team Change In-Game = Disabled

CODcasting = Enabled

3rd Person Spectating = Disabled

Dynamic Map Elements = Disabled

Revenge Voice = Disabled

Battle Chatter = Disabled

Announcer = Enabled

 

General Settings:

Pre-Match Timer = 15 Seconds

Pre-Round Timer = 5 Seconds (3 Seconds for Search & Destroy)

Mini-map = Normal

Explosive Delay = Disabled

Killcam = Enabled

Scorestreak Delay = 15 Seconds

Score Multiplier = 1

 

Spawn Settings:

Hardpoint Respawn Delay = Disabled

Uplink Respawn Delay = 5 Seconds

Search and Destroy Respawn Delay = Disabled

Capture the Flag Resapwn Delay = 7.5

Incremental Spawn Delay = Disabled

Force Respawn = Enabled

Wave Spawn Delay = Disabled

Suicide Penalty = 3 seconds – (Hardpoint only)

Team Killed Penalty = Disabled

 

Health and Damage Settings

Health = 100%

Health Regeneration = Normal

Friendly Fire = Enabled

Teamkill Kick Limit = Disabled

Headshots Only = Disabled

Hit Indicator = Enabled

 

Hardpoint

The following rules and conditions apply to Hardpoint matches only.

Win Condition Settings

Time Limit = 5 Minutes

Score Limit = 250 Points

Black Ops 3 Arena Game Modes

 

Hardpoint Advanced Settings

Lifetime = 1 Minute

Capture Time = Disabled

Activation Delay Time = Disabled

Locations = Linear Order

Scoring = Constant

Pause Time = Enabled

 

SnD

The rules and conditions listed below apply to matches of Search & Destroy only.

Win Condition Settings

Time Limit = 1.5 Minutes

Round Win Limit = 6 Rounds

 

Search & Destroy Advanced Settings

Bomb Timer = 45 Seconds

Plant Time = 5 Seconds

Defuse Time = 7.5 Seconds

Multi Bomb = Disabled

Switch Sides = Every Round

Silent Plant = Enabled

Dog Tags = Disabled

Number of Lives Per Player = 1 Life

 

Uplink

The rules and conditions down below apply only to Uplink matches in Arena.

Win Condition Settings

Round Time Limit = 5 Minutes

Round Score Limit = Unlimited

 

Uplink Advanced Settings

Round Limit = 2 Rounds

Carrier Armor = Normal

Carry Score = 2 Points

Throw Score = 1 Point

Enemy Carrier = Delayed

Reset Time = 15 Seconds

 

Capture the Flag

The settings below apply only to CTF matches in Arena.

Win Condition Settings

Win Rule = Round Wins

Time Limit = 5 minutes

 

Capture the Flag Advanced Settings

Capture Limit = Unlimited

Round Limit = 2 rounds

Round Win Limit = 2 rounds

Enemy Carrier = Delayed

Auto Return Time = 30 Seconds

Capture Condition = Flag At Base

Pickup Time = Instant

Return Time = Instant

 

Maps and Game Modes

Finally, let’s talk about what maps are in the rotation for each game mode.

In Hardpoint players will play on the following maps:

  • Breach
  • Evac
  • Fringe
  • Stronghold

In Uplink matches you’ll see these maps in rotation:

  • Breach
  • Evac
  • Fringe
  • Infection

In SnD matches within Arena you’ll play on these maps:

  • Breach
  • Evac
  • Fringe
  • Hunted
  • Infection
  • Redwood
  • Stronghold

Last, but not least, in Capture the Flag matches in Arena mode players will compete on the following maps:

  • Breach
  • Evac
  • Fringe
  • Stronghold

That’s all there is to talk about Black Ops 3’s Arena mode for now. Any future updates or changes made to the playlist, settings, maps, or other aspects of the competitive mode will be listed on this page if and when they are put in place.